binest03459·2022년 4월 14일


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Differences in DELETE, TRUNCATE, DROP Commands


The DELETE statement in SQL is a Data Manipulation Language(DML) Command. It is used to delete existing records from an existing table. We can delete a single record or multiple records depending on the condition specified in the query.
The conditions are specified in the WHERE clause of the DELETE statement. If we omit the WHERE clause then all of the records will be deleted and the table will be empty.
The DELETE statement scans every row before deleting it. Thus it is slower as compared to TRUNCATE command. If we want to delete all the records of a table, it is preferable to use TRUNCATE in place of DELETE as the former is faster than the latter.
DELETE is a DML Command so it can be rolled back.
The DELETE command returns the number of records that were deleted by its execution.

  • Syntax in MySQL
DELETE FROM table_name [WHERE conditions];

table_name specifies the name of the table from which we want to delete the records.
WHERE conditions is optional. We can provide conditions to filter out the records to be deleted.

  • For example
DELETE FROM Students WHERE Stu_Id = 23;

This query will delete the record(s) from Students table where field Stu_Id has a value 23.

DELETE FROM Employees WHERE Stu_Id = 30 && Emp_Name = "Seongbin";

This query will delete the record(s) of the Student from Students table whose Stu_Id is 30 and Stu_Name is Seongbin.


This query will delete all the records from Students table as WHERE clause and conditions are not specified.


TRUNCATE Command is a Data Definition Language operation. It is used to remove all the records from a table. It deletes all the records from an existing table but not the table itself. The structure or schema of the table is preserved.
Truncate command marks the table for deallocation. This operation removes all the data from a table bypassing a number of constraints enforced on the table. MySQL does not allow the users to truncate the table which is referenced as FOREIGN KEY in another table.
TRUNCATE TABLE statement is a DDL command so it can not be rolled back.
The Truncate command resets the AUTO_INCREMENT counters on the table.
MySQL truncates the table by dropping and creating the table. Thus, the DELETE triggers for the table do not fire during the truncation.

  • Syntax in MySQL
TRUNCATE TABLE [database_name.]table_name;

[database_name.] is optional. It is used to specify the name of the database in which the table exists.
[table_name] specifies the name of the table we want to truncate.

  • For example

This query will remove all the records from the table Students.

TRUNCATE TABLE School.Students;

This query will remove all the records from the table Students in the database School.

Truncate statement is equivalent to DELETE operation without a WHERE clause. The truncate command removes the records from a table without scanning it. This is why it is faster than the DELETE statement.


DROP statement is a Data Definition Language(DDL) Command which is used to delete existing database objects. It can be used to delete databases, tables, views, triggers, etc.
A DROP statement in SQL removes a component from a relational database management system (RDBMS).
DROP is a DDL Command. Objects deleted using DROP are permanently lost and it cannot be rolled back.
Unlike TRUNCATE which only deletes the data of the tables, the DROP command deletes the data of the table as well as removes the entire schema/structure of the table from the database.

  • Syntax in MySQL
DROP object object_name

object: Keyword representing the type of the database object.
object_name: It specifies the name of the object we want to delete.

  • For example
DROP TABLE Teachers;

This query will remove the whole table Teachers from the database.

DROP DATABASE Teachers_union;

This query will delete the database Teachers_union.

DROP Command removes the table definition and all the data, indexes, triggers, constraints and permission specifications for that table.

Footprints in Coding

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